Urban spas, hotels with spas… Health through water has gained importance in recent years due to the growing societal interest in leisure activities related to relaxation and health. We’ll tell you what you need to set it up.

Driven by the strong growth in offers, the businesses geared towards health and beauty tourism, which achieved a turnover of 840 million euros in 2003, have experienced growth rates of around 20% in recent years,” according to the data of a spa study carried out by the consulting company DBK.


These establishments include hotels with spas, health and beauty centers with spas and thalassotherapy or seawater facilities. On the one hand, urban spas are making a name for themselves in big cities and selling well-being to customers at an affordable price, without them having to spend time traveling to thermal baths. In the meantime, hotels are being built in the tourist areas that include the spa as a claim in their offer.

And it is that spa services are in fashion. According to the DBK study, “In 2003, these establishments had a total offer of around 56,000 places, with the Canary Islands being the municipality with the largest offer, with around 35% of the total number of places; then Andalusia with 18%; Catalonia with 10%; Balearic Islands with 9% and the Valencian Community with 8%”.

Until recently, most people in Spain didn’t know what the word spa meant. In other countries, however, it is a more mature sector. Linda Nicolau, Managing Director of Ecologic Natural Spa, explains: “In the United States and Asia, where you find the greatest spas in the world, tourist spas are truly spectacular and already form a very important part of a category hotel. Spas, urban spas and wellness centers are also very popular and tend to be very luxurious in these areas.”


In Spain we are still in a growth phase, although supply has increased significantly in recent years. If we focus on the comparison between provinces, Nicolau comments that “the biggest differences are found in the big cities or in areas with a high level of tourism. These are the areas where the spa concept is most prominent due to foreign influences. It also stands out a lot for the prices. For example, having a treatment in cities like Madrid, Barcelona, ​​​​​​Marbella or Mallorca is much more expensive than having it done in an inland city.”

Being a growing sector, the opportunities are greater than what an already mature sector can offer. Here are some of them:

personalization. Offering personalized customer service is your best weapon to differentiate yourself from the competition.

specialists. Having professionals available at all times to clarify doubts and point out the best way to use the circuit will help you retain your customer base. You can also offer personalized courses for children, the elderly, people with certain diseases… All within the broadest possible schedule in order to be able to adapt to the needs of your clientele.

diversification. The possibilities of diversification into other areas are high: the most common is the addition of the services offered in the spa with the services of a beauty center.
However, there are many more options, since it can be diversified with various devices, a solarium and even a hairdresser. Offering a comprehensive service, always related to beauty and well-being, can help you increase your customer base. However, this diversification can also pose a threat as other companies – such as hotels, gyms, beauty centers, etc. – increasingly include in their portfolio spa-specific products and services such as hydromassage pools or whirlpools, among many others.

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